Almost 2 years ago we reviewed the “Halbrad” (which translates as “half wheel”) and this folding ebike scooter reminded us of this.
The YikeBike from New Zealand has to be one of the smallest ebike scooters when folded as well as one of the quickest to fold down at less than 20 seconds. The manufacturers show it folding down and fitting into its own bag that can be slung over one shoulder at journey’s end, going into an office, or when boarding a train or bus. This option looks good when considering the 13.5kg weight (which increases to 15.4kg if you want two rear wheels for increased stability, making this into a trike).
Like the Halbrad it relies on having one much smaller wheel – the Halbrad placing the small wheel in front and the YikeBike at the rear. It also has the same position for the hands, low down below the body rather than out in front.
The Halbrad relies on pedal power whereas the YikeBike is an ebike scooter which can propel the rider without pedalling and is going to attract commuters who don’t want to work up a sweat while travelling into work, or for those nipping to the shops. The advertised range is 14km (with 20km possible as an option – or about 12.5 miles), which it can do at a maximum speed of 23 km/h (14.3 mph) – far faster than the normal speed of rush hour traffic. It is helped in its range with ABS regenerative braking. Useful for commuters is that the charging time of the 313 W/h lithium ion 36v nominal battery is only 1.5 hours, so there is plenty of time to recharge while at the office.
This folding ebike scooter has certainly had some international acclaim, ranging from being featured on the front page of Time magazine and being put on display at the Design Museum in London. It has also won awards including the BEST Product Design award, HiTech Hardware award, WIPO Innovative Inventions, the German design award, Green Dot sustainability, and was a finalist in the Nobel Prize for sustainability.
Model V of the YikeBike is advertised on the manufacturer’s website at US$ 3995 which is around £2850. It is offered by a UK dealer for £3495 which seems a hefty increase for ocean freight and duty but does include free UK delivery.
The YikeBike comes with fitted permanent LED lights: white to the front and red to the rear as is customary, but also with amber side lights for enhanced visibility. It also has an audio piezo electric horn – making the ebike scooter even more scooter-like – and indicator signals.
YikeBike have a UK importer who is holding stocks.